1963, Pathe, 115 min, France/Italy, Dir: Jacques Deray

Jacques Deray’s masterful heist noir is a brilliantly choreographed tale of greed and betrayal, with familiar faces (Charles Vanel, Michel Auclair, Michele Mercier) in various stages of intrigue. Deray handles the action with metronomic precision, beautifully accented by a magnificent score from Michel Magne. Pathé’s 4K restoration is flawless in its rendering of Deray’s masterful design, revealing the crisp, astringent camerawork of Claude Renoir (son of Jean). Come see the brilliant beginnings of one of France’s finest directors of the past half-century!

1949, 96 min, Dir: Henri-Georges Clouzot

One of director Henri-Georges Clouzot’s most neglected masterpieces and winner of the Golden Lion at the Venice Film Festival in 1949, MANON was his blistering response to the hypocritical reaction in France to LE CORBEAU. Updating Abbe Prevost’s classic novel to postwar France, the film stars newcomer Cécile Aubrey (sex-kitten precursor to Brigitte Bardot) as a prostitute who is condemned as a collaborationist for sleeping with Germans during the war. She’s rescued from the noose by a smitten resistance fighter (Michel Auclair) – but once the couple flees from Normandy, Manon’s desire for the good things in life leads her directly to Parisian black markets and brothels, a debauched course that can result only in self-destruction. With Serge Reggiani. In French with English subtitles.

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